Who doesn’t want perfectly aligned, beautiful teeth? Sometimes though our teeth need some help to position themselves properly. This help comes in the form of tooth hardware like braces and retainers. But have you ever looked at someone with braces and asked yourself “How on earth do they keep those wires and teeth clean?”? Well, you are not alone. Those bands, wires, and brackets can trap food that cultivates bacteria that cause tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath. For those who don’t have braces, it may seem a pretty complicated procedure but it’s actually quite simple. All it needs is diligence and adherence to expert advice. Special instructions are given by the dentist to all persons having their braces attached for the first time. The braces’ intended function gets maximized with healthy teeth and gums. Now let’s learn about the proper way to brush with braces.
- Both manual and electric toothbrushes can do the job. As long as it’s not worn out or the bristles are not frayed, they’re good to go. Some specialized orthodontic toothbrushes are designed to make brushing with braces easier. They usually have V-shaped ends and multi-level bristles. They are great as well.
- Brush the part above the brace. Position the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle from the upper gums facing the upper portion of the brackets. Make sure the bristles reach under the wire. Do this for all your teeth until all the superior areas are thoroughly clean.
- Brush the part below the brace. This time position the toothbrush at the same angle from the lower end of the teeth and facing the lower portion on the brackets. Now brush along the entire length of the inferior parts until clean.
- Brush the front of the wire. Unlike regular toothbrushing, you brush this area in a circular motion. Be firm yet gentle with your toothbrush to clean effectively without damage.
- Don’t forget to brush your gumline. This is the part where the teeth and gums meet. Regularly cleaning this area will make it healthy and less prone to bleeding.
- Use an interdental brush to clean the areas that were not reached by the toothbrush. These are small straight brushes that are small enough to be inserted in between the brackets under the wires.
- Brush for at least 2 minutes twice a day. Brush after every meal if you can.
- Don’t forget to floss at least once a day. Those areas in between teeth are where most bacteria lodge. When they remain untouched, they proliferate and start destroying the teeth.
- Mouthwash is a helpful addition to the oral care routine. They kill bacteria that cause tooth decay and bad breath. The minty flavor also leaves the mouth refreshed.
- No special toothpaste is required. Any toothpaste with fluoride is suitable for brushing teeth with braces.
Consistency is the key to a successful orthodontic treatment. A good outcome is a product of good cooperation between the dentist and the patient. Listening to your dentist and religiously following the instructions should lead to that coveted picture-perfect smile.